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The story of enzymes is as fascinating in its details as it is amazing in its applications in promoting human health and wellbeing. Enzymes are proteins that are an integral part of Nature. In fact, life without enzymes would not be possible. Enzymes are needed for each and every chemical reaction that make life possible. No vitamin, mineral or hormone can exert its beneficial effects in the human body without the involvement of enzymes. Despite their central role in all bodily functions, it is only now that the full import of enzymes in human health and disease has begun to be fully appreciated. MUCOS Pharma, the pioneer in systemic enzyme therapy, has been the standard bearer for the last fifty years in having paved the way to elucidate the function of enzymes, and their use as an oral systemic therapy.
The history of enzyme research reads quite like a detective story, as diligence of dedicated scientists tested the secrets of enzyme function and developed preparations to alleviate human pain and suffering. It all started with a simple question: What are the enzymes? Years, even decades, of work finally yielded insights into the architecture of enzymes, which is beguiling in its simplicity and elegance, yet embodies the intricacies of their function.
What are Enzymes:
Enzymes are proteins composed of amino acids, the basic building blocks of life, arranged in chains that spontaneously fold into three-dimensional structures. These three-dimensional structures confer specificity of function. Whereas all enzymes are proteins, not all proteins are enzymes. Enzymes are involved in nearly all metabolic and physiological processes in the body. Thus, they are a key in the maintenance of a strong immune system, a robust cardiovascular tree,a healthy and intact central nervous system, and optimal hormonal balance in the body.
The body produces its own supply of enzymes in requisite amounts, as and when they are needed. The enzymes, however, do get "used up" at rates faster than the body can replenish its supplies under a variety of conditions, such as consumption of "junk" foods or intake of medicines. In fact, with advancing years, the body loses its ability to produce sufficient amounts of enzymes to keep up the demands of the body imposed by metabolic attrition. This insufficiency is the root cause of susceptibility to chronic and age-related diseases.
Given that enzymes are required in all cells of the body to assist in chemical reactions, they participate in a myriad of reactions that allow organs, tissues and glands to function optimally and thrive. If the body is imagined as an efficient chemical factory, it is the enzymes that fuel each and every reaction in that factory. As such, enzymes function as catalysts. That is, they make things work at a faster rate. The reason enzymes are needed for bodily functions is that, in their absence, most of the physiological processes would either not take place, or would proceed at an excruciatingly slow speed. In other words, at normal body temperatures, it will be virtually impossible for the cells to perform their tasks speedily and efficiently. That means that enzymes initiate, maintain, accelerate, and terminate biochemical processes in the body to foster health and vitality.
Functions of Enzymes:
Since they have unique structure, each enzyme is meant to carry out a specific task. Any given enzyme is evolved to fulfill a definite function, and this specificity allows the body to strictly control the use of enzymes. Once activated, an enzyme will perform its specific function until it is "exhausted," or it is inhibited by another enzyme, in which case its activity is curtailed and/or stopped. As researchers have found out after years of painstaking and laborious work, there is a good reason for this control: It prevents bodily processes from spinning out of control, which may be deleterious to health and wellbeing.
Even casually, the specificity of enzymes suggests that there will be particular types. In fact, Nature has "engineered" families of enzymes for specific tasks. One of the most beneficial and abundant classes of enzymes is referred to as proteolytic enzymes. Enzymes in this category have the ability to "nibble" at other proteins, and break them down into smaller chains of amino acids. Hence the name, proteolytic enzymes, which literally means "chewing up proteins."
On the surface, it might appear counterintuitive to degrade proteins in the body. Are proteins not required for optimal cellular function, and do they not afford good health and vibrancy well into the golden years? Indeed, they do! In disease, however, the human body produces proteins that could potentially have injurious effects, and further compromise health if left unattended. It was precisely this goal that Drs. Max Wolf and Helen Benitez set themselves roughly one-half a century ago when they started their quest to find a wholesome, effective and safe alternative for human health and wellbeing. Of course, their objective was to understand how cancer comes about and whether natural alternatives could be designed that will not wreak havoc on the human body as radiation and chemotherapy do. Despite their scientific astuteness, little did Drs. Wolf and Benitez anticipate that their systemic enzymes will afford man immense health benefits, irrespective of whether or not systemic enzymes "cured" cancer.
Drs. Wolf and Benitez, along with Dr. Karl Ransberger, a young biomedical researcher from Germany, tested a large number of enzymes from animal and plant sources. The work was slow, and it progressed in fits and starts, since the researchers had to optimize the conditions to isolate and purify the enzymes. Not only that, they had to struggle to maintain the activity of the enzymes, because the enzymes are notorious for being finicky and unstable. That is, if the enzymes are not handled properly under precisely defined condition, they become inactive. After all, the researchers were working in the 1950s, a time when the basic enzyme technology was still in its infancy, and individual scientists had to rely more on their wits than technology to tweak answers from Nature.
Once Drs. Wolf and Benitez had optimized the conditions necessary to maintain the enzyme activity, they started the next part of their work to combine and evaluate various enzyme formulations in assessing their beneficial effects. These must have been trying times for Drs. Wolf and Benitez. By its very nature, the work was slow, and required almost superhuman patience. After years of dedicated work, they finally experienced the Eureka effect! Their systemic enzymes worked! Perhaps, better than they thought, since beneficial effects of their enzymes were far more varied than they had expected in their wildest expectations.
Benefits of Wobenzym:
Why did Wobenzym work so well? To a large extent, the answer rests with the type of enzymes contained in Wobenezym. These are proteolytic enzymes, which cleave other proteins. While under normal physiological condition, proteolytic enzymes maintain homeostasis in the healthy body, they also break down aberrant proteins that may arise during various diseases. Thus, in basic research and several tens of clinical studies carried out over the years under the auspices of MUCOS Pharma, Wobenzym has been found to degrade, for example, harmful and abnormal immune complexes that precipitate autoimmune diseases. Furthermore, immune complexes also thicken the blood, which potentially could trigger an array of diseases. These studies are a matter of public domain, and may be readily retrieved.
In fact, after some 50 years of Dr. Wolf's work, we have come full circle. Dr. Wolf started his research to find a cure for cancer. After decades of diligent work, almost remarkable determination and scientific insights, proteolytic enzymes have been shown to help cancer patients. Thus, Wobe-Mugos, a sister product to MUCOS' flagship product Wobenzym, which is the cancer of B cells in the blood. In addition, Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez, affiliated with Cornell University Medical School in New York, has worked tirelessly to show that proteolytic enzymes are effective in the clinical management of pancreatic cancer. In recognition of his painstaking work, Dr. Gonzalez has been awarded a research grant by the National Cancer Institute to carry out a clinical trial. Undoubtedly, the work of scores of scientists and physicians over the decades deserves recognition, which has made this sea change possible. By the same token, however, it is also a testament to the insights, vision, and belief that Dr. Wolf had in his work.
Technology and Entrepreneurism:
The story of science is replete with coincidences, which make things turn for the better. Dr. Karl Ransberger's association with Drs. Wolf and Benitez was one such event that ushered in the era of systemic enzyme therapy. In addition to being an accomplished researcher, Dr. Ransberger also had an entrepreneurial streak, which he used to make systemic enzyme the world's premier preparation, and maintains even today to chart new trails in enzyme therapy. Professional association between Dr. Ransberger and his mentor Dr. Wolf soon develop into business partnership and life-long friendship. When Drs. Ransberger and Wolf decided to move back to Germany with this truly innovative enzyme preparation for its time, in recognition of the work by Drs. Wolf and Benitez, it was given the name WoBeEnzym.. Over the past 45 years, Wobenzym has become a household name in Germany in particular but also in other European countries as well. Furthermore, Wobenzym is recognized all over the world with MUCOS Pharma's subsidiaries in countries such as Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Czech Republic, India, Pakistan, Korea, New Zealand and, of course, the United States.
Before this success became possible, numerous scientific and technical challenges had to be met and overcome. One of the major challenges was to preserve the integrity of the enzymes during the manufacturing process. Enzymes are notoriously fragile: Exposure to heat deactivates them. In addition, even the slightest exposure to moisture prods them to chewing themselves up. That is the nature of the beasts. Enzymes contained in Wobenzym are proteins, and proteolytic enzymes do break themselves down (auto-proteolysis) -- quite like the snake that cannibalizes itself by chewing on its own tail.
That was the challenge that faced Dr. Ransberger in the early 1960s: Namely, how to stabilize the enzymes while purifying them in large quantities with the highest potency. Purity and potency of enzymes is absolutely necessary to be effective. Dr. Ransberger was at the forefront of the efforts to develop the technology to achieve these goals. Under his leadership, scientists and researchers developed techniques that ensured that the enzymes are purified to the highest possible degree and are stabilized such that their biological activity is retained.
The next challenge, of course, was to the manufacturing of enzymes in the tablet form. Making tablets during the manufacturing process generates considerable heat. Being heat-sensitive as the enzymes are, it was absolutely necessary to keep the temperature down in order for enzymes to remain active. With remarkable ingenuity, Dr. Ransberger and his team optimized manufacturing conditions to cool down the tableting machinery and equipment to maintain exactly the correct temperatures throughout the manufacturing process for enzymes to remain "alive" and biologically active.
Like his mentor Dr. Wolf, the driving force for Dr. Ransberger's hard work, dedication and commitment was to help people. That is the reason, the innovations at MUCOS did not stop in the 1960s. For example, today, MUCOS Pharma isolates chymotrypsin, one of the enzymes in Wobenzym, by state-of-the-art column chromatography. Over the years, breakthrough thinking combined with a burning desire to find safe and wholesome healthcare solutions has been the hallmark of MUCOS' mission. It is the result of Dr. Ransberger's lifelong focus, scientific and technological expertise and a businessman's acumen that today Wobenzym is world's most-renowned enzyme preparation.
By persistent efforts, extensive research and development, and innovative technology, Dr. Ransberger found a way to stabilize enzymes to withstand the harsh processing during manufacturing. It is this patented technology that MUCOS Pharma uses to not only extract enzymes from their sources but also to stabilize them such that enzymes retain their full biological activity. Without maximal activity, an enzyme preparation is not what it is cut out to be. That is the reason, MUCOS Pharma, and its North American corporate partner, Marlyn Nutraceuticals, stands foursquare behind Wobenzym.
Enzymes facilitate the smooth commerce of the bodily functions. They are an indispensable part of human health and disease. For good reason, then, in 1966, the editor of the Scottish Medical Journal editorialized thus in 1966: "Probably nearly half of our daily production of protein in the body consists of enzymes. Indeed, each of us, as with all living organisms, could be regarded as an orderly succession of enzymatic reactions."
Wobenzym works naturally to promote countless healing processes throughout the body. In fact, you may wonder how one product can do so many different things! People use Wobenzym to enhance joint health, promote circulation, boost the immune system, recover from sports and work injuries...and much more.
Wobenzym can do so much because it works at the most fundamental level of biochemistry — by supplementing the body's need for enzymes.
What are enzymes?
Enzymes are the catalysts that start up nearly every chemical reaction in the body. In fact, no vitamin, mineral or hormone can do its job without the help of an enzyme. There are thousands of different enzymes in the body, each charged with a specific task.
What are "systemic" enzymes?
You may be familiar with digestive enzymes that work in the stomach and intestine to enhance digestion. Wobenzym is different! Each tablet is enterically coated so that the enzymes pass through the digestive tract and enter the bloodstream in their natural form. As the circulatory system delivers these highly purified enzymes throughout the body along with nutrients and oxygen, Wobenzym exerts its benefits systemically, to all your tissues and organs.
How does Wobenzym work?
The enzymes in Wobenzym break down certain proteins in the body. It may seem strange to break down proteins, since they are essential to life. However, some proteins can be quite harmful to joints, organs and tissue. Wobenzym works like a biological "vacuum cleaner" to rid the blood of these harmful proteins.
Why do I need Wobenzym?
When you are young, the body produces most of the enzymes it needs to maintain healthy joints, a strong immune system, robust circulation and overall good health. However, in some cases, enzymes can be "used up" faster than the body can manufacture them. Especially with age, the body loses its ability to produce enough enzymes to keep up with its own demand. This can leave a person vulnerable to a wide range of health problems, which is why Wobenzym is so important.
Is Wobenzym safe?
Clinical studies have found that Wobenzym has no serious adverse side effects even in extremely large doses. If you are taking blood-thinning medication, you should consult with your physician before taking Wobenzym.
Garden of Life - Wobenzym N Healthy Inflammation and Joint Support - 100 Enteric-Coated Tablets (formerly distributed by Mucos) Supplement Facts Serving Size: 3 Tablets Servings Per Container: about 266
Amount Per Serving %DV*
Pancreatin 56,000 USP-units protease (pancreas)(sus scrofa) 300 mg *
Bromelain 675 FIP-unit (Ananus comosus) 135 mg *
Chymotrypsin 900 FIP-unit (pancreas)(Bos tauraus) 3 mg *
Papain 6M 492 FIP-unit (Canica papaya) 180 mg *
Trypsin 2,160 FIP-unit (pancreas)(sus scrofa) 72 mg *
Rutosid 3H2O (Rutin)(Sophora Japonica) 150 mg *
*Daily Value Not Established. †Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your diet values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Other Ingredients: Calcium phosphate, corn polysaccharides, microcrystalline cellulose, crospovidone, macrogol 6000, vegetable stearate, silica, pH resistant enteric coating, talc, triethyl citrate, vanillin, purified water.
As a dietary supplement, take three (3) tablets, two (2) times a day, at least forty-five minutes before meals, or as recommended by your health professional.
Overall Rating for Wobenzym N by Garden of Life - 200 Tablets
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.